Matthew McConaughey to Star in ‘Billionaire’s Vinegar’

Matthew McConaughey will star in Sony’s “The Billionaire’s Vinegar,” with Escape Artists and Overbrook Entertainment producing.

The project is based on the Benjamin Wallace book, which traces the history of vintage Bordeaux bottles believed to have belonged to Thomas Jefferson that were auctioned by wine company Christie’s for exorbitant prices. Many experts have concluded that the bottles were never Jefferson’s.

The film will be produced by Todd Black, James Lassiter, Jason Blumenthal, Steve Tisch and Will Smith. Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, whose credits include “3:10 to Yuma” and “Wanted,” are writing the adaptation.

The project has been in development since 2008, when the producers acquired rights to Wallace’s book before it was published.

The book centers on a Forbes family member paying $156,000 at auction for a bottle of 1787 Chateau Lafite Bordeaux, which Christie’s asserted was part of a Jefferson cache discovered in France. That bottle led to a lawsuit by wine collector Bill Koch against wine merchant Hardy Rodenstock, alleging that he had orchestrated a fraud against wine collectors. A default judgment was entered against Rodenstock in May 2010.

McConaughey is shooting Civil War drama “Free State of Jones” and will star in Stephen Gaghan’s mining drama “Gold” for Black Bear Pictures. He is repped by CAA.

Brandt and Haas are creators/showrunners of “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago PD” and the upcoming “Chicago Med.” They are repped WME and Industry Entertainment.

The news was first reported by Deadline.

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